Cryptocurrency exchange Bitget has launched a new initiative dubbed the “Blockchain4Her” group which aims to support female-led businesses.
It is no secret that the blockchain and Web3 sector has been historically male-dominated. Blockchain4Her will launch incubation programs tailored especially for female entrepreneurs. This will include a $10 million fund which will support female-led startups in the blockchain industry.
Bitget, a Seychelles-based cryptocurrency exchange, said in a recent study it found that there is limited gender diversity in the blockchain funding market. Findings show that female-led blockchain startups secured only 6% of the total funding in the blockchain sector.
“In an industry that is evolving rapidly, diversity and inclusion are vital for sustainable growth,” said Gracy Chen, Managing Director of Bitget, in a press release.
Chen explains the Blockchain4Her initiative reflects Bitget’s goal to bridge the gender gap in the blockchain industry. She said the group aims to achieve this through incubation programs, pitch competitions, and recognition events. The group will empower and encourage women to take on leadership roles in the Web3 and blockchain space.
“This initiative aligns with our broader vision of creating a more equitable and inclusive future through the power of blockchain,” adds Chen.
The announcement was made during the Web3 Hub Davos event hosted by CV Labs, at the World Economic Forum 2024.
Gender Disparities in the VC Ecosystem
Recently Bitget released a report on blockchain funding across 2022 and 2023 highlighting the latest trends including gender disparities in the present VC ecosystem. In a Jan 11 release, the exchange revealed that blockchain startups have received $27.85 billion between January 2022 and Q3 2023 while marking a 70% fall per quarter across that period. Overall, the bearish market saw funding drop by 61.6% in 2022 with the lowest figure per quarter standing at $1.97 billion, a 29% drop from early months in 2022. While startups attracted $27.85 billion, female-led Web3 firms posted only $1.77 billion due to the prevailing bias in the market. This gender bias reduces the opportunity for women and in turn, affects the wider adoption of cryptocurrencies into female-related fields in traditional finance.
Blockchain4Her to Provide Mentorship
The Blockchain4Her will provide support, mentorship, and resources, for female-founded startups, offering them a platform to showcase their businesses and secure investment.Over the years, the crypto asset industry has been intensifying its recruitment of new employees, with crypto hires rising by a robust 73% between 2019 and 2021 in the US. However, even though the number of female professionals hired by the industry is also on the rise, their share of the total is decreasing, according to a recent report by employment-oriented social media platform LinkedIn in 2023. In a recent interview with Cryptonews, Chen talked about the surge in the Bitcoin ecosystem this year which will have long-term opportunities for the industry.
Bitget also launched the Blockchain for Youth program offers a $10 million fund to invest in blockchain startups in different parts of the world. Chen shared insights into various initiatives, including educational campaigns and meetups in different regions including Japan, Argentina. Australia, Dubai, Taiwan, United Kingdom, Nigeria, Canada and India, emphasizing their dedication to empowering the youth in the crypto space.
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